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Plan to help votes save lives

People heading to the polls to cast their vote in next year's general election could also have the opportunity to sign up as organ donors at the same time.

Commons Leader Harriet Harman said giving people the chance to register as organ donors when they vote in elections is a "very sensible" idea.

She added she would raise the issue with Justice Secretary Jack Straw.

Labour MP for Morecambe and Lunesdale, Geraldine Smith, raised the case of her constituent George Higginson who died when his bicycle was involved in a collision with a pick-up truck.

The 10-year-old's family respected his wish to be an organ donor and six of his organs have saved the lives of five other people.

Ms Smith said his father Jonathan said it would be "beneficial" if people could sign up to be donors at elections, particularly the General Election.

During questions on future business Ms Harman told MPs: "It is a desperately sad and difficult decision for all families when a child dies and I think it is an incredibly generous thing for them to agree for an organ donation which can save other people's lives.

"You make a very sensible suggestion that this should be available in polling stations, I will talk to the Justice Secretary to see whether or not cards for signing up for organ donation could be available in polling stations."

Copyright © Press Association 2009

Organ donor register

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"Great that you are raising awareness of organ donation. We thought you might be interested in 'Save the Tin Man' , designed to encourage people to sign up to the NHS Organ Donor Register. Hope you like it, and do pass it on!" - Jessica, London